Comet rejects Plymouth cerebral palsy boy's £500 gift card

Sam Horton Sam Horton's mother Maria was given a gift card to help him with his school work

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A mother whose son has cerebral palsy has spoken of her anger after struggling electrical retailer Comet refused to accept a £500 gift card.

Maria Horton was given the card by the charity Family Fund to buy an iPad to help her son Sam, four, with his school work.

But when she visited a Comet store in Plymouth, staff refused to accept it.

Administrators for the retail store say the use of gift cards and vouchers has been temporarily suspended.

Information for customers

  • Administrators will have to decide whether Comet vouchers and gift cards will be honoured
  • Generally, gift card holders are fairly low on a list of creditors when a business folds
  • Extended warranties are overseen by a separate business so will remain valid. Only if that company ceased trading would a trust fund be set up to meet obligations to customers who hold extended warranties

Mother-of-two Mrs Horton, 32, from Plymouth said: "I said to the staff, 'You already have the money, can't you accept it?' and they said, 'We can't do anything for you.'

"I spoke to the manager and he said the same thing, that I would have to go away without the goods.

"I'm not the only one who has lost out. They have the money but they are not willing to provide the goods to the children who need them."

Comet has appointed Deloitte as administrators, putting 6,611 jobs at risk.

Comet's demise is one of the biggest High Street casualties of recent years.

Deloitte says its priority is to stabilise the business and assess its financial position, while the search for a buyer gets under way.

It says that customer orders will be fulfilled "wherever possible", but the use of gift cards and vouchers has been temporarily suspended.

Family Fund was unavailable for comment.

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